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Witch hazel is an inexpensive alternative to cosmetic counter toners. This page contains witch hazel toner recipes.
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I just recently found out about homemade skincare and am very excited. I already tried the facial scrubs (honey and brown sugar) and loved it. What can I use for a facial toner? I have sensitive skin. Thanks.
By Dee from Palisades Park
Witch Hazel is the best (it's distilled from the bark of a twig) but Water mixed with a little Apple Cider Vinegar can also be used. Also Aspirin dissolved in water (same ingredient that's in many Acne medications, salicylic acid) is another option.
More Information about Witch Hazel
* A Better Way to Wash Your Face:
If you have sensitive skin (like I do) instead of washing your face with soap or buying fancy make-up removers, simply massage any Moisturizer (face or body lotion) into your face when it's totally dry, also massage it around your eye area to remove eye make-up, then rinse it all off. Your face will be very clean, but not dry!
* Washing your face with Moisturizer even works for oily skin because using products that dry skin (like soap) usually cause the skin to produce excess oil in it's attempt to regain it's natural balance. So the more you wash your face with soap & drying products to try to move oil, the more your skin rebels & produces even more. This is why washing your face with a moisturizer works for all skin types.
The lotion I use is called "Kiss My Face" & it's found in any Health Food Store. I Like the type called "Peaches & Cream" (because it has AHA's) but they also have "Fragrance Free" which may work better for you. They even make an SPF 15 (sunscreen) moisturizer.
Here is more about Kiss My Face
I use witch hazel on my aging face. I tend to have dry skin, & the witch hazel doesn't seem to be drying.
I also use Witch Hazel. In the summer I keep it in the refrigerator. It's very cool and refreshing on hot, sticky summer days.
I see lots of references to witch hazel, which does work well. One thing I will add to facial care, is that if you want to avoid wrinkles, you must exfoliate. A good daily scrub seems to work well for me. I don't use a toner, because I add some homemade skin oil to my face (see posting with same name), then I just wait a little while and apply my makeup.
I also have sensitive and fragile skin. The best toner I have EVER found is rosewater.
Does anyone have a recipe for a gentle skin toner?
There is a natural plant that's called aloe vera. It's good for dry skin if that's what your looking for. My husband puts it on. He has very fair skin. He rubs it on when he gets burned from the sun, it helps him so much. I know you can also eat it as well.
If, by toner, you mean a mild astringent, try rosewater. It can be bought at a pharmacy and drug stores. If your skin is dry, try adding a little glycerine to it. Dab it on with a cotton wool ball on clean skin.
Dickinson's Witch Hazel works wonders! You can get it in an alcohol free version too, but you might have to look for that one. Really any witch hazel works, stinks a little but the smell goes away. I take my surface makeup off when I get home, just to get some of the gunk off, then do a real cleaning later.
Hope that helps!
Try this recipe-
1/2 c. Lemon Juice
1 c. Distilled Water
2/3 c. Witch Hazel
Combine all the ingredients in a glass measuring cup and mix well. Pour into a clean bottle or container. It will stay fresh in a refrigerator for upto one week. Shake well before each use. Apply with a cotton ball or soft cloth.
Try this one, it will balance the ph of any skin and I used it for a spa party when my niece turned thirteen. I've included the metric as I see you are from Ontario, like me.
2 c. (475 mL) distilled water
1/4 c. (59 mL) apple cider vinegar
10 drops of your favourite essential oil, try lavender, lemon or rose ( I used 6 of rose, 5 of lavender for a lavender/rose scent that everyone loved, including me)
Combine all ingredients and store (does not need refrigeration) Use about l tbsp (15 mL) per application. The vinegar helps combat the alkaline residue that soap and cleansers leave behind. When your skin mantains the correct pH balance (5:5), it has a much better chance of fighting off infections.
Shake bottle before each use. Use daily followed by moisturizer. MAKES ABOUT 32 treatments.
You do not say what skin type you have other than what sounds like sensitive.
Here's one that is good for all skin types, especially rashy or irritated.
1 tbsp (15 mL) crushed fennel seeds
1/4 c. (59 mL) apple cider vinegar
2 cups (473 mL) distilled water
2 tsp (10 mL) plain glycerin (see the first aid section of your favourite drugstore)
You need something to crush the fennel, see if you can get it already crushed or ground somewhere. If not, a mortar and pestle works if u had one if not, put them in a zip lock and pound them gently with a rolling pin or bottle.
About 32 treatments, use daily. Will also soften hair if used as a rinse. Retores ph and soften skin too.
Boil water. Remove from heat, add crushed fennel seeds. Allow to steep for 45 minutes. Strain, add vinegar and glycerin, and store. Shake well before each use. Use l tbsp (15 mL) per application; splash on if desired. Does not require refrigeration if product is used up within 30 days.
If you have dry or sensitive skin, try dissolving a teaspoon of powdered milk in a cup of spring water and applying it with a cotton bowl or spray bottle. Instead of powdered milk you can use about 2-3 teaspoons of regular milk. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice if you'd like a more astringent effect. I've posted a lot of natural skin care recipes like this on my website if you're interested (www.fruitfacial.net)! I hope this helps.
Many thanks to all of you who were kind enough to send me recipes for "Gentle Skin Toner".
They all sound lovely, and I'll enjoy trying them.
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
I found a recipe for skin toner that I needed some information on please. It said:
My question is can I substitute regular vinegar instead of Red Wine Vinegar, and what the devil is vanilla essence? Can I just use vanilla extract? All help is appreciated. Thanks.
Jamish from Leoti, KS
The best liquid that I have found to keep my skin soft and blemish free is oatmeal water. I boil some old fashioned oats in more water than I need, then when it's cool, I skim off the water and put it in a plastic bottle. I refrigerate it. It is somewhat sticky, but I put it on with a cotton ball for a few minutes, then rinse with cool water. Makes your skin feel great. (05/13/2007)
This is a good toner/pH Restorer
Combine and store in non-clear container. Use about 1 tbsp per application. Needs no refrigeration.
I did this with rose and it smells wonderful.
As for cleanser: try this one:
Classic Rosewater and Glycerin Cleanser
Combine ingredients and heat to just boiling DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL. Store. Apply with washcloth or cotton pads, using 1 tbsp per application. No refrigeration required. Shake before each use. Makes 16 treatments.
Actually I was able to buy it already mixed in a brown bottle at my local drugstore, try the first aid section (I know sounds like an odd place to put it, but that's where they had it) (05/14/2007)
By Mary Lou
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Red wine vinegar is slightly different, and has a stronger flavor. I use it for making dressing for a Greek salad. Vanilla essence is likely pure vanilla. I would guess you could use vanilla extract since I would expect all it does is make the red wine vinegar smell better when you put it on your skin. (03/28/2008)
By Louise B.
Tone with freshly squeezed lemon juice applied with a cotton ball. This natural astringent purifies the pores and provides a dose of pure vitamin C.
To gently balance and tone, apply rose water which can be found at most drug stores, with a cotton ball. Or make your own rose water at home, recipe below.
Rose Petal Skin Toner Recipe
Mix ingredients together making sure everything is blended well.
Then strain and splash on your face after cleansing your skin.
Apple cider vinegar. It's the best. And its not full of chemicals which make your skin worse. (05/05/2008)
Be careful with witch hazel bought from thrift/dollar stores; the witch hazels often have alcohol mixed into them. (11/07/2008)
I am looking for ingredients for a homemade astringent or toner.
Nancy from Lancaster, PA
As a child my grandmother used nothing but apple cider vinegar. I used to grimace. now I find myself using it, have never had outbreaks. (02/15/2007)
Witch Hazel is an astrigent, and cheap too. (02/15/2007)
I attended a few "beauty seminars" when I worked for the Liggett Company years ago, One of the
things we were taught was what actually went into the various cosmetics for certain skin types. If you have dry skin for instance, use nothing except Witch Hazel based Toner... and if you have oily skin, add alcohol to the Witch Hazel. Toner is most often used for dry skin, and astringent is for the oily types.
At one of the top name cosmetic seminars, we were told that there is NO better cleansing cream or
cold cream than simple Pond's. It was not a Pond's seminar... So, for the past 60 years, I've used Witch Hazel and Pond's Cold Cream, and my 3 daughters have done the same. We all have great skin although a bit on the dry side which is OK with us since the oily type is more prone to breaking out, I think. Hope this helps.
All the best.
By Julia in Orlando, FL
I use witch hazel. You can find it cheap at a dollar store. (02/21/2007)
Steep any sort of citrus peel in hot water - like you're making tea out of it. Cool it and keep it in the fridge, applying with a cotton ball twice a day. It keeps for about a month. I have very finicky skin, and this soothes it and makes it glow! (03/03/2007)